There will be about 212 billion devices by the end of 2020, IDC statistics suggests. It’s roughly 40 devices for each human being. All these things will grow in computing power and Internet of Things is called to unite them into the worldwide network.
This is the core idea and, at the same time, the biggest challenge that Internet of Things is facing nowadays. The industry is frequently mentioned in the articles, blog posts and tech reviews over the past few years, but few people know how to apply IoT in the real life right now.
What is Internet of Things (IoT)?
“Anything that can be connected, will be connected.”
The general idea behind IoT is to create the network of devices that will communicate with each other. This is by now the best Internet of Things Definition.
Internet of Things will allow devices to collect and exchange data, optimize infrastructure expenses. By means of this connection it will be possible to integrate complex algorithms that reduce routine workload. But those are global, corporate-level plans of the distant future.
Nevertheless, small and medium businesses are also trying to bring IoT ideas to life. And, well… they are succeeding in their intentions. As the statistics said, IoT will generate about $14,4 trillion of value by the end of 2030. In several market niches IoT integration is already paying off.
IoT Trends and Challenges
By now, the core problem of IoT development is standardization. The industry requires a single communication format in order to encompass all devices. But there are too many global corporations that are eager to control the market. For instance, Google, Samsung, Apple, Panasonic, LG and many others that are not so well known.
The reason for such interest in development of private IoT platform is pretty obvious. Extreme Networks estimates that 5 billion people will have Internet access by the end of 2020. Thus, tech giants will acquire another access point to the consumer market by securing Internet of Things technology.
Moreover, global companies are facing huge security and privacy challenges in the internet of things. Thus, the development process is slowing proportionally to the size of the market that and quantity of devices.
On the other hand, nothing stops small business from the development of simple IoT applications that will add value to their main products and save money by optimizing internal costs.
Internet of Things is revolutionizing the interaction between products, people, and customers. By implementing IoT the simplest of products can produce data, allowing users to see things like location and status, so users can know what’s happening in real time and identify important trends over time.
From this perspective, one of the best features about IoT is a wide variety of devices and industries where it can be implemented:
- Smartwatches and Phones can be used for remote control.
- Home Appliances staffed by sensors (microwave ovens, air conditioners, stacked washing machines and clothes dryers, refrigerators, vacuum cleaners, etc).
- Smart TV and Virtual Reality Headsets can display all necessary information and statistics gathered by IoT sensors.
Turn devices into points of transactions and value. Understand usage patterns and seamlessly manage logistics and physical assets with the power of IoT apps.
IoT Apps Ideas for Business
Many Internet of Things startups are trying to create unique smart home solutions. The interest has grown stronger after Google closed $3.2 billion purchase of Nest. For instance, SingTel and Foxconn have invested $ 3.2 million in Singaporean video control systems.
While the market is rapidly growing we advise using cloud computing systems that will handle the interactions between smart house services.
Where to implement:
- Remote light control
- Access to security cameras
- Thermostat control
- Home appliances control
The development of dedicated cloud platform may straightforward user access to its house data and make it more secure.
Another great Internet of Things examples are Niwa and Lono – the first automated watering systems. Niwa controls the hydroponics of houseplants and feeds them properly in order to achieve optimal growing conditions 24/7. Lono grants remote access to the garden sprinklers.
Sooth to say, internet of thing apps are the new black in mobile development.
Sport & Fitness
Endeavour company states that about 30% of people that have bought fitness trackers, stopped using them in half a year. In order to avoid such loss of interest, manufacturers are trying to embed sensors into the sportswear.
Application for IoT fitness sensors:
- Posture tracker.
- Pronation tracker.
- Pressure and heart rate monitor.
- Blood oxygen level control.
There are already tons of waterproof sensors on the market and numerous internet of things fitness projects. But the real challenge is still unsolved: develop an intuitive and useful mobile app that would connect and gather statistics from all those devices.
Experts believe that Internet of Things healthcare market will reach $47.4 billion by the end of 2020.
Hotels and private sports clubs are already using smart bracelets to navigate guests across the territory. Hotels can implement IoT sensors in order to predict visitors routes and prepare beverages in advance, and thus securing better level of service.
On the other hand, smart food storage in a restaurant may analyze product inventory and, once it’s running low on supplies, it can make replenishment orders by itself without human involvement.
IoT for restaurants:
- Automatic products ordering.
- Expiration date tracking system.
- Replenishment of cleaners.
- Optimization of expenses.
This is one of the most promising areas for IoT integration. This trend is also often referred to as the Industrial Internet or Industry 4.0.
Recently, Caterpillar Marine has saved $5 million by using Big Data and adopting simple IoT sensor system. The company has used predictive maintenance analytics software which identifies the optimum time for maintenance of the machinery.
While this example may seem applicable only to large companies, there are cheaper ways to save on production and maintenance by integrating IoT technologies.
Development of IoT software for small and medium-sized enterprises:
- Engine sensors can reduce the equipment wear by 30%.
- Soil analyzers can cut by ⅓ the consumption of chemicals, seeds, and fertilizers.
- Delivery algorithms that will automatically order the replaceable parts for machinery.
2017 promises the next major leap in the field of shopping and e-commerce. At this time with a help of IoT.
At the end of 2016, Amazon opened an automated supermarket Amazon Go. It has a Just Walk Out technology that process payments automatic without cashier assistance.
The technology behind the system is quite simple. The client downloads mobile app and enters the store being pre-authorized. When finished shopping client’s credit card is charged automatically upon exiting the store.
Such technology can be used in 24/7 stores in order to cut night-shift salaries.
Another approach is proposed by Panasonic. The company has created a smart cart. It is able to count the number of products selected by the buyer and calculate the total purchase cost. Besides, the cart will pack all the purchased goods itself. Buyer will only have to pay.
UPDATES: Possible interaction of IoT and other technologies.
Extremely fast development of IoT leads not only to the successful implementation of this technologies into our lives, but also to creating dangerous situation. Sensational hacking of smart devices via Mirai is a good example. That means security is what IoT needs most of all.
Meanwhile the new blockchain technology is now used not only for transactions between users, but also in a wide range of human activities, including the financial market, the gaming industry, public administration etc.
The tandem of the blockchain and the Internet of things gradually forms the basis of a new concept called “programmable economics“.
“With Internet of things (IoT), things become smart, connected to each other, and more focused on increasing the role in the life of each person. The current concept of IoT lacks a critically important component – monetization. The success of the Internet of things will be achieved through the development of a new economic platform and the corresponding monetary model. Monetized “things” will predetermine the development of a new economy, ” : said David Furlonger, vice president and board member of Gartner.
Thus, the IoT and the blockchain open up truly broad opportunities, both for automation of everyday and everyday tasks, and for decision support systems and robotization of high-tech industries in 2017.
Whether you’re a fast-moving startup or a global enterprise, you can shape Internet of Things in your way as you create new business models and revenue streams.
Developing IoT platform lets you connect sensors and devices to the cloud, collect & secure data, and gain insights in real time to make timely business decisions. We’ll help you build, launch and manage IoT applications and solutions quickly, securely, and at scale.
If you have an idea of an IoT app, contact us and we will bring it to life!